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Caregiving strain and all-cause mortality: evidence from the REGARDS study.

TitleCaregiving strain and all-cause mortality: evidence from the REGARDS study.
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2013
AuthorsPerkins, M, Howard, VJ, Wadley, VG, Crowe, M, Safford, MM, Haley, WE, Howard, G, Roth, DL
JournalJ Gerontol B Psychol Sci Soc Sci
Date Published2013 Jul
KeywordsAged, Aged, 80 and over, Caregivers, Chronic Disease, Cohort Studies, Evidence-Based Medicine, Female, Health Surveys, Humans, Male, Middle Aged, Psychiatric Status Rating Scales, Stress, Psychological

OBJECTIVES: Using a large, national sample, this study examined perceived caregiving strain and other caregiving factors in relation to all-cause mortality.METHOD: The REasons for Geographic and Racial Differences in Stroke (REGARDS) study is a population-based cohort of men and women aged 45 years and older. Approximately 12% (n = 3,710) reported that they were providing ongoing care to a family member with a chronic illness or disability. Proportional hazards models were used for this subsample to examine the effects of caregiving status measures on all-cause mortality over the subsequent 5-year period, both before and after covariate adjustment.RESULTS: Caregivers who reported high caregiving strain had significantly higher adjusted mortality rates than both no strain (hazard ratio [HR] = 1.55, p = .02) and some strain (HR = 1.83, p = .001) caregivers. The mortality effects of caregiving strain were not found to differ by race, sex, or the type of caregiving relationship (i.e., spouse, parent, child, sibling, and other).DISCUSSION: High perceived caregiving strain is associated with increased all-cause mortality after controlling for appropriate covariates. High caregiving strain constitutes a significant health concern and these caregivers should be targeted for appropriate interventions.

Alternate JournalJ Gerontol B Psychol Sci Soc Sci
PubMed ID23033358
PubMed Central IDPMC3674731
Grant ListR01 NS075047 / NS / NINDS NIH HHS / United States
K24 HL111154 / HL / NHLBI NIH HHS / United States
R01 NS045789 / NS / NINDS NIH HHS / United States
U01 NS041588 / NS / NINDS NIH HHS / United States
1F31AG032215-01A1 / AG / NIA NIH HHS / United States